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Loving Life

April 8th, 2010 at 07:11 am

So it's been a while since I last posted.

DW's health is great. She's been full of energy lately. We're just waiting for June to roll around to go to Mayo and start her treatments. Couldn't be going any better.

I'm still only working three days a week, which has allowed me to start going to school full time. I take 3 classes every 8 weeks. The college on post is allowing me to do an accelerated program and finish an associates in a year. The green to gold adviser is already working with me to get enrolled in that. Working out quite nicely.

The army eliminated all re-enlistment bonus's for NCO's in my MOS. Beauty of it is, my promotion board for E-5 is finally at the end of this month. So guess what. I re-enlisted for 6 more years and got a smooth $8,800 bonus. I also keep what bonus's are left from my initial contract. If I'm going green to gold anyway, might as well get as much money as I can. We'll see $6,600 of that now, and $1,500 of another bonus next month. Then our tax return will be a minimum of $2,700 next spring because that's the amount with-held from the bonus's and we claim exempt. So that finished off our 6 month EF at $10,000 and will put $2,700 in principal down on our mortgage next spring. Keeps getting better.

We're with Waddell and Reed right now for our Roth's. Not a bad company, but charges a 5% load. Terribly high. Problem is, Vanguard requires a minimum of $3,000 to open any single Roth. So since our EF is done, we'll start putting our 30% towards the Roth now which will allow us to switch to Vanguard by the end of the year. Their expense ratios rarely climb above .5%.

We'll also be able to start paying down on the mortgage now. DW wants nothing to do with the finances, so we'll be putting an additional $250 towards principal each month. DW gets her toys when she wants them, and aside from that she doesn't care.

Life couldn't really be any better at this particular point in time. Everything is going great. If I had to find a downside, it's that we still haven't finished the basement. We have the funds to do so, but not the time right now. 3 classes a week and 3 days of work, plus all of DW's medical and the basement takes a back seat. But anyway, life is great.

I love the army - pays for everything hook, line, and sinker. One of my buddies failed his weigh and tape, the commander threatened to chapter him, so his doctor literally referred him to have lipo done, and tricare approved it. He's having lipo done on the army's dime because he's too fat by 1% body fat but still got a 265 on his PT test. Awesome and hilarious at the same time.

9 Responses to “Loving Life”

  1. gamecock43 Says:

    I was wondering how you were doing! Life seemed to be overwhelming for so long...I really wondered when it would get better. Glad it has! Sounds like you are rocking and rolling!

  2. Broken Arrow Says:

    Welcome back!

    If you prefer, just save the money up in a regular bank until you have enough, then buy Vanguard's STAR fund. The starting balance on that is $1000. It's no chump change either, but it's a lot better than the usual $3000.

  3. creditcardfree Says:

    Thanks for the update. I wasn't familiar with the Green to Gold program so I looked it up. It looks like a great program. My husband was a TPU in the Army Reserves when he received his direct commission. The Army paid for his bachelor's too!

    Our basement isn't finished either and we'll be moving in less than two years. I look at it as a clean slate for someone else to put their mark on the house. You'll get to it when you can.

  4. MonkeyMama Says:

    It's good to hear some good news from you!

    Agreed - buy STAR fund for $1k. The kids and I have each opened a Vanguard account with only $1k to start. I just opened one a couple of weeks ago because I needed a regular IRA to roll my profit sharing into - I only had ROTHs otherwise.

  5. ceejay74 Says:

    Wonderful news about your wife, and glad the military is taking good care of you!

  6. Analise Says:

    It's great to hear things are looking up, and especially that your wife is doing so well.

  7. dmontngrey Says:

    Glad to hear the update and that things are going so well for you and DW. Smile

  8. dtjunkie Says:

    Nice Post. Way to go!

  9. Jerry Says:

    Good post, and congrats on the school and the promotion! That is great news, especially about DW. I think it's crazy that Tricare insurance covers lipo, especially for a guy who failed the tape by a mere 1%? (Then again, it's the military, so it doesn't always lead to things making sense...) =) I hope things at the Mayo go great...
    Jerry

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